By Konnie McCollum
Distance: 200 laps, 300 miles (1.5-mile tri-oval)
Qualifying: Fri., June 15, begins at 8 p.m. (EDT)
Race: 8:30 p.m. (EDT) Saturday, June 16
TV-Radio: ESPN-2 (live); MRN
Admission: $50-$80. Gates open 3 p.m. Saturday.
Also at the Speedway:
Clear Channel Cincinnati FanFest. 8 p.m. Friday
during Busch Series practice. Free infield access and driver autograph session. Gates open at 5 p.m.
Rock guitarist Peter Frampton performs at 6:30 p.m. Saturday before the race.
(June 2007) Kentucky Speedway race fans will be treated to a truly international field of 43 drivers June 16 when Australian Marco Ambrose lines up to compete in the NASCAR Busch Series Meijer 300 Presented by Oreo. It is a track familiar to the 30-year-old Australian native after having won the pole position here last year in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series event.
Ambrose drives the No. 59 Kingsford Charcoal Ford Fusion and has proven to be a worthy competitor in only his first Busch season. In late May, Ambrose ranked 11th in the NASCAR Busch Series point standings and third in the Raybestos Rookie of the Year standings after 12 starts. He has posted two top-10 finishes.
|Drivers to Watch |
Carl Edwards, 27, Columbia, Mo. Now in his fifth Busch season, Edwards returns to the track where he won the 2003 Truck race.
David Reutimann, 37, Zephyrhills Fla. After a successful Truck Series career, he has moved up to Busch.
Bobby Hamilton Jr., 29, White House, Tenn. The defending Kentucky champion is back and held 7th place in standings in late May.
Nicknamed Devil Racer, he finished 16th in his NASCAR Busch Series debut at Daytona International Speedway on Feb. 17. He won the Raybestos Rookie of the Race Award in what was his first race on the 2.5-mile Daytona Superspeedway.
He scored his debut NASCAR Busch Series top-10 finish March 4 at his first NASCAR road course event with eighth place at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriquez in Mexico City.
|From the Kentucky Speedway |
Among the new fan-friendly promotions for the upcoming season are the June 15 Clearchannel Cincinnati Fanfest and Aug. 10 Indy Racing League Fanfest.
Visitors will be able to see practice sessions, meet series drivers, enjoy live music and be entertained by interactive displays in garage areas both days.
Guests who make a $75 minimum purchase at any Meijer location in the Greater Cincinnati, Louisville or Lexington, Ky., area in the two-week time frame preceding the June 15 and Aug. 10 Fanfest events as well as the July 13 ARCA RE/MAX Series Channel 5-150 will receive a coupon good for two free admissions to the event that follows the purchase. Coupons, which represent a savings of $40 per event, will be issued at checkout counters and redeemed at the speedway ticket windows on the day of the event.
For more information, visit www.kentuckyspeedway.com.
He also picked up his second Raybestos Rookie of the Race Award and second top-10 finish March 10 with his 10th place at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
It was at an early age that Ambrose showed signs of his motor racing ability and won four Tasmanian Junior karting titles before beginning senior competition at age 16. Leaving Australia in 1996 to chase the elusive Formula One dream in England, he learned quickly and won regularly.
He out-qualified future F1 drivers Jenson Button in the 1998 British Formula Ford Festival and did the same to Kimi Raikonnen in 1999. He won the 1999 British Formula Ford championship.
He returned to Australia, however, to secure further financial backing and signed with Stone Brothers Racing Team and Ford to drive in the V8 Supercar Series during the 2001 season. He was named Rookie of the Year then, and in 2002 he won his first race at the Phillip Island course.
In 2003 and 2004, he won consecutive titles in the V8 Supercar Championship series in Australia. It is considered the worlds most competitive touring car championship, using cars somewhat similar to the U.S. Trans Am Series.
It was in 2006 when he was offered a chance to team up with Wood Brothers-JTG Racing in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series.
Last year in the Truck Series, Ambrose completed the season with two top five and four top 10 finishes.
Again in 2007, Ambrose skills have been put to the test as he progressed to the NASCAR Busch Series and added two NASCAR Nextel Cup races. He will race the No. 47 Aussie Vineyards Team Australia Ford Fusion for Wood Brothers-JTG Racing at Sonoma on June 24 and Watkins Glen on Aug. 12. Already, he has garnered many loyal fans in Australia and new ones in America and across the world.